HAPPY HOLLOWS: CONCORDIA
If Happy Hollows’ 2014 album Amethyst was the beginning of the band’s movement away from the 90s rock style that powered 2013’s Spells, their latest Concordia is confirmation that they have landed firmly in synth-pop territory. From the 8-bit accents throughout “Palms” to the disco beat on “Meteors,” Happy Hollows aren’t afraid to push the limits of their now-evolved style. “Decide” and “Way Home” are expansive and atmospheric; songs like “Feel the Moon” recall the moment in the 80s when new wave guitar tones reigned supreme and it’s hard not to move your feet when listening to the catchy “Astrid” and slightly darker “Silent Partner.” While most of the songs on Concordia are likely to ignite a spontaneous dance party, the band does offer some tender moments, like the sweet and sparse title track. The powerful vocals standout throughout: Sarah Negahdari channels Karen O’s erratic, dramatic style, which gives the songs a potent shot of raw emotion and contrasts nicely with Dan Marcellus’ steady drumming, Charlie Mahoney’s disciplined synth and Matthew Fry’s playful guitar melodies. Overall, Concordia is a solid collection of ethereal synth-pop songs, and it seems like Happy Hollows has found their niche—at least for now.
HAPPY HOLLOWS’ CONCORDIA IS AVAILABLE FRI., SEPT. 8, FROM HAPPY HOLLOWS.